As most people have heard on the news and reading through different publications since late last year, a new credit card will start being issued by all card issuing banks called EMV (Europay, MasterCard, Visa). These cards have a small computer chip inside them and when they are used, a special unique encrypted code is created for that purchase. It helps safe guard the customer’s credit card information and makes it extremely difficult to hack.
With that being said, there is a lot of talk about acceptance of EMV cards. Not all businesses are set-up, and confusion is common about when will they have to be set-up, etc. The truth is, no one really knows. The EMV cards that are popping up and being distributed to consumers currently, also have mag stripes on the back of them. This way they can be used the good old fashion way or the new way, EMV or more commonly known as chip and pin (because the card has a chip in it and a pin number has to be entered to complete the sale).
Currently, asking all businesses to switch to EMV capable terminals is not necessary nor feasible. This process is designed (which is why they are issuing EMV cards with mag strips on the back of them) to take years and years.
The numbers don’t lie. Is it estimated that by the end of 2015 only 29% of the credit cards in circulation in the US will be EMV with only 20% of merchants being EMV capable. If you continue calculating down that road, it will take until 2018 to have just about every credit card in circulation to be EMV capable. Remember, those EMV capable cards will STILL have a mag strip on the back to allow swiping of those cards. It’s estimated by 2026-28, that all credit cards will be EMV only cards with no mag stripe on the back (over 11-13 years from now).
A vast majority of sales people in the merchant processing field have been using EMV as a tactic to put some urgency in businesses that their terminal is not EMV capable implying that they need to upgrade their terminal today. That can’t be further from the truth. There are plenty of details that are still being worked out with current processing solutions to accept EMV and that migration to have every business have that ability will again, take years and years.
As your agent, we are always staying up-to-date, watching, and learning to make sure you are processing credit cards properly and safely. With the help of your processor, Nationwide Payments, we will always let you know if anything needs to be done to your processing set-up to stay current. Our communication to you will come directly from us either via mail or phone call or from the processor, Nationwide Payments, via mail. Any other phone call, mailing or person trying to solicit you regarding EMV are just using that tactic to create a false urgency to attempt to obtain your business. They are not doing so with your best interest in mind.
Never hesitate to contact us with any future questions or concerns. We are always available and happy to field any questions you have. Thank you for your loyalty to us and we wish you a safe and happy holiday season!